The coronavirus outbreak has not only caused all sorts of film/TV industry issues in Europe and Asia, but now the illness is beginning to cause concern in the US, leading to some of the biggest studios pulling out of one of the year’s biggest film festivals—SXSW.
According to Variety, Netflix, Amazon, and Apple have all decided to cancel their plans to be at this year’s SXSW, which begins March 13 in Austin Texas. This news comes after multiple deaths have been reported in the US due to coronavirus, with the state of Texas seeing the number of reported sick persons rise daily.
And to be clear, it’s not just the studio employees that won’t be making the trip to Austin for SXSW. We’re talking about the films they were presenting, as well. For Netflix, that’s a total of five fims, including the narrative feature “Uncorked,” along with documentaries “A Secret Love,” “L.A. Originals,” “Mucho Mucho Amor,” and “Have a Good Trip: Adventures in Psychedelics.”
Apple was expected to premiere the highly anticipated rock doc “Beastie Boys Story” from director Spike Jonze, in addition to two series, “Central Park” and “Home.” Amazon also had some high-profile premieres planned, including “Upload” and “Tales from the Loop.”
With these three companies already pulling out of the event, it’ll be interesting to see if more dominos will fall. Of course, the independent films that don’t have large studio support will still want to show up, but if more studios publicly say they won’t be attending, the festival itself might have a serious problem. Thankfully for the event, the film festival is just one part of the festivities.
As of now, plans are still going forward with SXSW slated to begin on March 13 and run until March 22.